Open letter to the board regarding Default Judgement

The following open letter has been sent to the board this afternoon:

Dear Board Member

Default Judgement 

Nominet Subscription and Joining Fees

I refer to the attached Default Judgement in my favour.

My claim was for the refund of my joining and subscription fees.  Nominet did not file a defence.

I have seen the statement the company made on the Community today, claiming that you did not have sight of the claim, which doesn’t actually deny receipt of the claim.

The claim was properly filed by me and served on you by the Court. It is something that I do not accept.  However, if that is your position, at its most generous, it would be an abject failure in management systems in a company that describes itself as part of the critical national infrastructure.

What makes your position even less tenable is that three directors, including the Chair, took part in a members video call on 13 July.  During that call, Andy Green and Simon Blackler were asked directly about my claim.  Both denied knowledge of it.

Even if you were unaware of the claim at that time, you cannot claim ignorance after that.  There was plenty of time for the board to find out about the claim and have a defence filed within the time limit required.  I believe Simon knew that I was the member who had brought the claim; but in any event an enquiry either during the call or after would have confirmed details of the claim.

Whatever you decide to do next, the situation now is that there is a default judgement in my favour against you in respect of your right to charge joining and subscriptions.

Without dealing with anything else, I would ask you to agree that it is impossible for Nominet to continue with its constitutional consultation.  

A central part of the proposed changes deals with your right to charge joining fees and subscriptions. There has already been one significant error during the consultation, where you falsely claimed that subscriptions had never been tiered and linked to domains under management.  Andy Green doubled down on that claim during the members call.  You now concede that the claim was false.

However, we now have a court judgement that confirms that Nominet has no right to charge joining and subscription fees.  That is a seismic shift in the ground on which the company’s constitution is founded.  It has to be brought to the members attention before they can be asked to make an informed decision.

Even if, as your Community statement suggests, you apply to set aside the judgement, it remains in force unless and until you make and prevail in an application; which, for the reasons I have set out above, I think is very unlikely to be successful.

Please confirm that the consultation will be suspended, pending the outcome of this matter.

Finally, please accept my subject access request under GDPR in respect of anything relating to this claim, including all emails, text and other messages and internal notes relating to it.

Yours faithfully,